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Publication numberUS20080063381 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/895,409
Publication dateMar 13, 2008
Filing dateAug 24, 2007
Priority dateAug 29, 2006
Also published asCN101558647A, US20080065989, US20080222675, US20110219395, WO2008027321A2, WO2008027321A3
Publication number11895409, 895409, US 2008/0063381 A1, US 2008/063381 A1, US 20080063381 A1, US 20080063381A1, US 2008063381 A1, US 2008063381A1, US-A1-20080063381, US-A1-2008063381, US2008/0063381A1, US2008/063381A1, US20080063381 A1, US20080063381A1, US2008063381 A1, US2008063381A1
InventorsKevin Conroy, Negar Moshiri, Jason Witenstein-Weaver
Original AssigneeHillcrest Laboratories, Inc.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Visual DVR television interface
US 20080063381 A1
Abstract
Systems and methods according to the present invention provide a user interface for digital video recording (DVR) functionality.
Images(11)
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Claims(24)
1. A digital video recording (DVR) system comprising:
a television;
a storage device for storing video programs and selectively replaying said video programs on said television;
a user interface for controlling recording of said video programs, said user interface displayed on said television, wherein at least some of said video programs are selectable for recording and replaying via a corresponding selectable image; and
a 3D pointing device for providing pointing and selection inputs to said user interface.
2. The DVR system of claim 1, wherein said user interface further comprises:
a first view which provides at least one row of corresponding selectable images associated with recorded video programs which are currently stored in said storage device.
3. The DVR system of claim 2, wherein said user interface further comprises:
a second view which provides a schedule of upcoming video programs to be recorded.
4. The DVR system of claim 3, wherein said first view and said second view are alternately displayed by pointing and selecting corresponding tab elements displayed on said television.
5. The DVR system of claim 3, wherein said user interface further comprises:
a third view which provides an indication of recording priority of said video programs.
6. The DVR system of claim 2, wherein said first view further includes a disk meter which indicates storage space remaining for video recordings.
7. The DVR system of claim 3, wherein said second view provides an indication of whether a scheduled recording conflicts with another scheduled recording.
8. The DVR system of claim 7, further comprising:
a user selectable filter for selectively providing said indication of whether a scheduled recording conflicts with another scheduled recording.
9. A method for digital video recording (DVR) comprising:
displaying, on a television, a user interface for controlling recording and replay of video programs;
providing input to said user interface by pointing at images displayed on said user interface using a 3D pointing device; and
selectively recording and replaying said video programs based on said input.
10. The method of claim 9, wherein said user interface further comprises:
a first view which provides at least one row of corresponding selectable images associated with recorded video programs which are currently stored in said storage device.
11. The method of claim 10, wherein said user interface further comprises:
a second view which provides a schedule of upcoming video programs to be recorded.
12. The method of claim 11, wherein said first view and said second view are alternately displayed by pointing and selecting corresponding tab elements displayed on said television.
13. The method of claim 11, wherein said user interface further comprises:
a third view which provides an indication of recording priority of said video programs.
14. The method of claim 10, wherein said first view further includes a disk meter which indicates storage space remaining for video recordings.
15. The method of claim 11, wherein said second view provides an indication of whether a scheduled recording conflicts with another scheduled recording.
16. The method of claim 15, further comprising:
selectively providing said indication of whether a scheduled recording conflicts with another scheduled recording.
17. A computer-readable medium containing instructions which, when executed by a processor, perform the steps of:
displaying, on a television, a user interface for controlling recording and replay of video programs;
providing input to said user interface by pointing at images displayed on said user interface using a 3D pointing device; and
selectively recording and replaying said video programs based on said input.
18. The computer-readable medium of claim 17, wherein said user interface further comprises:
a first view which provides at least one row of corresponding selectable images associated with recorded video programs which are currently stored in said storage device.
19. The computer-readable medium of claim 18, wherein said user interface further comprises:
a second view which provides a schedule of upcoming video programs to be recorded.
20. The computer-readable medium of claim 19, wherein said first view and said second view are alternately displayed by pointing and selecting corresponding tab elements displayed on said television.
21. The computer-readable medium of claim 19, wherein said user interface further comprises:
a third view which provides an indication of recording priority of said video programs.
22. The computer-readable medium of claim 18, wherein said first view further includes a disk meter which indicates storage space remaining for video recordings.
23. The computer-readable medium of claim 19, wherein said second view provides an indication of whether a scheduled recording conflicts with another scheduled recording.
24. The computer-readable medium of claim 23, further comprising:
selectively providing said indication of whether a scheduled recording conflicts with another scheduled recording.
Description
RELATED APPLICATION

This application is related to, and claims priority from, U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 60/823,870 filed on Aug. 29, 2006, entitled “Graphical User Interface”, the disclosure of which is incorporated here by reference.

BACKGROUND

Technologies associated with the communication of information have evolved rapidly over the last several decades. Television, cellular telephony, the Internet and optical communication techniques (to name just a few things) combine to inundate consumers with available information and entertainment options. Taking television as an example, the last three decades have seen the introduction of cable television service, satellite television service, pay-per-view movies and video-on-demand. Whereas television viewers of the 1960s could typically receive perhaps four or five over-the-air TV channels on their television sets, today's TV watchers have the opportunity to select from hundreds, thousands, and potentially millions of channels of shows and information. Video-on-demand technology, currently used primarily in hotels and the like, provides the potential for in-home entertainment selection from among thousands of movie titles.

The technological ability to provide so much information and content to end users provides both opportunities and challenges to system designers and service providers. One challenge is that while end users typically prefer having more choices rather than fewer, this preference is counterweighted by their desire that the selection process be both fast and simple. Unfortunately, the development of the systems and interfaces by which end users access media items has resulted in selection processes which are neither fast nor simple. Consider again the example of television programs. When television was in its infancy, determining which program to watch was a relatively simple process primarily due to the small number of choices. One would consult a printed guide which was formatted, for example, as series of columns and rows which showed the correspondence between (1) nearby television channels, (2) programs being transmitted on those channels and (3) date and time. The television was tuned to the desired channel by adjusting a tuner knob and the viewer watched the selected program. Later, remote control devices were introduced that permitted viewers to tune the television from a distance. This addition to the user-television interface created the phenomenon known as “channel surfing” whereby a viewer could rapidly view short segments being broadcast on a number of channels to quickly learn what programs were available at any given time.

Despite the fact that the number of channels and amount of viewable content has dramatically increased, the generally available user interface, control device options and frameworks for televisions has not changed much over the last 30 years. Printed guides are still the most prevalent mechanism for conveying programming information. The multiple button remote control with up and down arrows is still the most prevalent channel/content selection mechanism. The reaction of those who design and implement the TV user interface to the increase in available media content has been a straightforward extension of the existing selection procedures and interface objects. Thus, the number of rows in the printed guides has been increased to accommodate more channels. The number of buttons on the remote control devices has been increased to support additional functionality and content handling, e.g., as shown in FIG. 1. However, this approach has significantly increased both the time required for a viewer to review the available information and the complexity of actions required to implement a selection. Arguably, the cumbersome nature of the existing interface has hampered commercial implementation of some services, e.g., video-on-demand, since consumers are resistant to new services that will add complexity to an interface that they view as already too slow and complex.

In addition to increases in bandwidth and content, the user interface bottleneck problem is being exacerbated by the aggregation of technologies. Consumers are reacting positively to having the option of buying integrated systems rather than a number of segregable components. An example of this trend is the combination television/VCR/DVD in which three previously independent components are frequently sold today as an integrated unit. This trend is likely to continue, potentially with an end result that most if not all of the communication devices currently found in the household will be packaged together as an integrated unit, e.g., a television/VCR/DVD/internet access/radio/stereo unit. Even those who continue to buy separate components will likely desire seamless control of, and interworking between, the separate components. With this increased aggregation comes the potential for more complexity in the user interface. For example, when so-called “universal” remote units were introduced, e.g., to combine the functionality of TV remote units and VCR remote units, the number of buttons on these universal remote units was typically more than the number of buttons on either the TV remote unit or VCR remote unit individually. This added number of buttons and functionality makes it very difficult to control anything but the simplest aspects of a TV or VCR without hunting for exactly the right button on the remote. Many times, these universal remotes do not provide enough buttons to access many levels of control or features unique to certain TVs. In these cases, the original device remote unit is still needed, and the original hassle of handling multiple remotes remains due to user interface issues arising from the complexity of aggregation. Some remote units have addressed this problem by adding “soft” buttons that can be programmed with the expert commands. These soft buttons sometimes have accompanying LCD displays to indicate their action. These too have the flaw that they are difficult to use without looking away from the TV to the remote control. Yet another flaw in these remote units is the use of modes in an attempt to reduce the number of buttons. In these “moded” universal remote units, a special button exists to select whether the remote should communicate with the TV, DVD player, cable set-top box, VCR, etc. This causes many usability issues including sending commands to the wrong device, forcing the user to look at the remote to make sure that it is in the right mode, and it does not provide any simplification to the integration of multiple devices. The most advanced of these universal remote units provide some integration by allowing the user to program sequences of commands to multiple devices into the remote. This is such a difficult task that many users hire professional installers to program their universal remote units.

Some attempts have also been made to modernize the screen interface between end users and media systems. However, these attempts typically suffer from, among other drawbacks, an inability to easily scale between large collections of media items and small collections of media items. For example, interfaces which rely on lists of items may work well for small collections of media items, but are tedious to browse for large collections of media items. Interfaces which rely on hierarchical navigation (e.g., tree structures) may be speedier to traverse than list interfaces for large collections of media items, but are not readily adaptable to small collections of media items. Additionally, users tend to lose interest in selection processes wherein the user has to move through three or more layers in a tree structure. For all of these cases, current remote units make this selection process even more tedious by forcing the user to repeatedly depress the up and down buttons to navigate the list or hierarchies. When selection skipping controls are available such as page up and page down, the user usually has to look at the remote to find these special buttons or be trained to know that they even exist. Accordingly, organizing frameworks, techniques and systems which simplify the control and screen interface between users and media systems as well as accelerate the selection process, while at the same time permitting service providers to take advantage of the increases in available bandwidth to end user equipment by facilitating the supply of a large number of media items and new services to the user have been proposed in U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/768,432, filed on Jan. 30, 2004, entitled “A Control Framework with a Zoomable Graphical User Interface for Organizing, Selecting and Launching Media Items”, the disclosure of which is incorporated here by reference.

One feature which has become increasingly popular with consumers is digital video recording (DVR) capability. DVR refers to devices or techniques which involve recording video in a digital format to a disk drive or other storage medium. The term includes, for example, stand-alone set-top boxes and software for personal computers which enables video capture and playback to and from disk.

SUMMARY

According to an exemplary embodiment, a digital video recording (DVR) system includes a television, a storage device for storing video programs and selectively replaying the video programs on the television, a user interface for controlling recording of the video programs, the user interface displayed on the television, wherein at least some of the video programs are selectable for recording and replaying via a corresponding selectable image, and a 3D pointing device for providing pointing and selection inputs to the user interface.

According to another exemplary embodiment, a method for digital video recording (DVR) includes displaying, on a television, a user interface for controlling recording and replay of video programs, providing input to said user interface by pointing at images displayed on said user interface using a 3D pointing device, and selectively recording and replaying the video programs based on the input.

According to another exemplary embodiment, a computer-readable medium containing instructions which, when executed by a processor, perform the steps of displaying, on a television, a user interface for controlling recording and replay of video programs, providing input to the user interface by pointing at images displayed on the user interface using a 3D pointing device, and selectively recording and replaying the video programs based on the input.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The accompanying drawings illustrate exemplary embodiments of the present invention, wherein:

FIG. 1 depicts a conventional remote control unit for an entertainment system;

FIG. 2 depicts an exemplary media system in which exemplary embodiments of the present invention can be implemented;

FIG. 3(a) shows a 3D pointing device according to an exemplary embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 3(b) illustrates a user employing a 3D pointing device to provide input to a user interface on a television according to an exemplary embodiment of the present invention;

FIG. 3(c) illustrates a home UI view of a user interface according to an exemplary embodiment of the present invention;

FIGS. 4(a)-4(f) illustrate user interface screens associated with DVR functionality according to an exemplary embodiment of the present invention; and

FIGS. 5(a)-5(d) illustrate user interface screens associated with DVR functionality according to an exemplary embodiment of the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

The following detailed description of the invention refers to the accompanying drawings. The same reference numbers in different drawings identify the same or similar elements. Also, the following detailed description does not limit the invention. Instead, the scope of the invention is defined by the appended claims.

In order to provide some context for this discussion, an exemplary aggregated media system 200 in which the present invention can be implemented will first be described with respect to FIG. 2. Those skilled in the art will appreciate, however, that the present invention is not restricted to implementation in this type of media system and that more or fewer components can be included therein. Therein, an input/output (I/O) bus 210 connects the system components in the media system 200 together. The I/O bus 210 represents any of a number of different of mechanisms and techniques for routing signals between the media system components. For example, the I/O bus 210 may include an appropriate number of independent audio “patch” cables that route audio signals, coaxial cables that route video signals, two-wire serial lines or infrared or radio frequency transceivers that route control signals, optical fiber or any other routing mechanisms that route other types of signals.

In this exemplary embodiment, the media system 200 includes a television/monitor 212, a video cassette recorder (VCR) 214, digital video disk (DVD) recorder/playback device 216, audio/video tuner 218 and compact disk player 220 coupled to the I/O bus 210. The VCR 214, DVD 216 and compact disk player 220 may be single disk or single cassette devices, or alternatively may be multiple disk or multiple cassette devices. They may be independent units or integrated together. In addition, the media system 200 includes a microphone/speaker system 222, video camera 224 and a wireless I/O control device 226. According to exemplary embodiments of the present invention, the wireless I/O control device 226 is a 3D pointing device. The wireless I/O control device 226 can communicate with the entertainment system 200 using, e.g., an IR or RF transmitter or transceiver. Alternatively, the I/O control device can be connected to the entertainment system 200 via a wire. One or more hard drives (or disks) 280 can be provided for storage of recorded video, e.g., using the DVR interfaces described below.

The entertainment system 200 also includes a system controller 228. According to one exemplary embodiment of the present invention, the system controller 228 operates to store and display entertainment system data available from a plurality of entertainment system data sources and to control a wide variety of features associated with each of the system components. As shown in FIG. 2, system controller 228 is coupled, either directly or indirectly, to each of the system components, as necessary, through I/O bus 210. In one exemplary embodiment, in addition to or in place of I/O bus 210, system controller 228 is configured with a wireless communication transmitter (or transceiver), which is capable of communicating with the system components via IR signals or RF signals. Regardless of the control medium, the system controller 228 is configured to control the media components of the media system 200 via a graphical user interface described below.

As further illustrated in FIG. 2, media system 200 may be configured to receive media items from various media sources and service providers. In this exemplary embodiment, media system 200 receives media input from and, optionally, sends information to, any or all of the following sources: cable broadcast 230, satellite broadcast 232 (e.g., via a satellite dish), very high frequency (VHF) or ultra high frequency (UHF) radio frequency communication of the broadcast television networks 234 (e.g., via an aerial antenna), telephone network 236 and cable modem 238 (or another source of Internet content). Those skilled in the art will appreciate that the media components and media sources illustrated and described with respect to FIG. 2 are purely exemplary and that media system 200 may include more or fewer of both. For example, other types of inputs to the system include AM/FM radio and satellite radio.

More details regarding this exemplary entertainment system and frameworks associated therewith can be found in the above-incorporated by reference U.S. Patent Application entitled “A Control Framework with a Zoomable Graphical User Interface for Organizing, Selecting and Launching Media Items”. Additionally, the interested reader is also referred to U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/437,215, entitled “Global Navigation Objects in User Interfaces”, filed on May 19, 2006, the disclosure of which is incorporated here by reference. Alternatively, remote devices and interaction techniques between remote devices and user interfaces in accordance with the present invention can be used in conjunction with other types of systems, for example computer systems including, e.g., a display, a processor and a memory system or with various other systems and applications.

As mentioned in the Background section, remote devices which operate as 3D pointers are of particular interest for the present specification, although the present invention is not limited to systems including 3D pointers. Such devices enable the translation of movement of the device, e.g., linear movement, rotational movement, acceleration or any combination thereof, into commands to a user interface. An exemplary loop-shaped, 3D pointing device 300 is depicted in FIG. 3(a), however the present invention is not limited to loop-shaped devices. In this exemplary embodiment, the 3D pointing device 300 includes two buttons 302 and 304 as well as a scroll wheel 306 (scroll wheel 306 can also act as a button by depressing the scroll wheel 306), although other exemplary embodiments will include other physical configurations. User movement of the 3D pointing device 300 can be defined, for example, in terms of rotation about one or more of an x-axis attitude (roll), a y-axis elevation (pitch) or a z-axis heading (yaw). In addition, some exemplary embodiments of the present invention can additionally (or alternatively) measure linear movement of the 3D pointing device 300 along the x, y, and/or z axes to generate cursor movement or other user interface commands. An example is provided below. A number of permutations and variations relating to 3D pointing devices can be implemented in systems according to exemplary embodiments of the present invention. The interested reader is referred to U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/119,663, entitled (as amended) “3D Pointing Devices and Methods”, filed on May 2, 2005, U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/119,719, entitled (as amended) “3D Pointing Devices with Tilt Compensation and Improved Usability”, also filed on May 2, 2005, U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/119,987, entitled (as amended) “Methods and Devices for Removing Unintentional Movement in 3D Pointing Devices”, also filed on May 2, 2005, U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/119,688, entitled “Methods and Devices for Identifying Users Based on Tremor”, also filed on May 2, 2005, and U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/480,662, entitled “3D Pointing Devices”, filed on Jul. 3, 2006, the disclosures of which are incorporated here by reference, for more details regarding exemplary 3D pointing devices which can be used in conjunction with exemplary embodiments of the present invention.

According to exemplary embodiments of the present invention, it is anticipated that 3D pointing devices 300 will be held by a user in front of a display 308 and that motion of the 3D pointing device 300 will be translated by the 3D pointing device into output which is usable to interact with the information displayed on display 308, e.g., to move the cursor 310 on the display 308. For example, such 3D pointing devices and their associated user interfaces can be used to make media selections on a television as shown in FIG. 3(b), which will be described in more detail below. Aspects of exemplary embodiments of the present invention can be optimized to enhance the user's experience of the so-called “10-foot” interface, i.e., a typical distance between a user and his or her television in a living room. For example, interactions between pointing, scrolling, zooming and panning, e.g., using a 3D pointing device and associated user interface, can be optimized for this environment as will be described below, although the present invention is not limited thereto.

Referring again to FIG. 3(a), an exemplary relationship between movement of the 3D pointing device 300 and corresponding cursor movement on a user interface will now be described. Rotation of the 3D pointing device 300 about the y-axis can be sensed by the 3D pointing device 300 and translated into an output usable by the system to move cursor 310 along the y2 axis of the display 308. Likewise, rotation of the 3D pointing device 308 about the z-axis can be sensed by the 3D pointing device 300 and translated into an output usable by the system to move cursor 310 along the x2 axis of the display 308. It will be appreciated that the output of 3D pointing device 300 can be used to interact with the display 308 in a number of ways other than (or in addition to) cursor movement, for example it can control cursor fading, volume or media transport (play, pause, fast-forward and rewind). Additionally, the system can be programmed to recognize gestures, e.g., predetermined movement patterns, to convey commands in addition to cursor movement. Moreover, other input commands, e.g., a zoom-in or zoom-out on a particular region of a display (e.g., actuated by pressing button 302 to zoom-in or button 304 to zoom-out), may also be available to the user.

According to exemplary embodiments of the present invention, user interfaces may use, at least in part, zooming techniques for moving between user interface views. The zooming transition effect can be performed by progressive scaling and displaying of at least some of the UI objects displayed on the current UI view to provide a visual impression of movement of those UI objects away from an observer. In another functional aspect of the present invention, user interfaces may zoom-in in response to user interaction with the user interface which will, likewise, result in the progressive scaling and display of UI objects that provide the visual impression of movement toward an observer. More information relating to zoomable user interfaces can be found in U.S. patent application Ser. No. 10/768,432, filed on Jan. 30, 2004, entitled “A Control Framework with a Zoomable Graphical User Interface for Organizing, Selecting and Launching Media Items”, and U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/829,263, filed on Apr. 9, 2001, entitled “Interactive Content Guide for Television Programming”, the disclosures of which are incorporated here by reference.

Movement within the user interface between different user interface views is not limited to zooming. Other non-zooming techniques can be used, in addition to zooming or as an alternative thereto, to transition between user interface views. For example, panning can be performed by progressive translation and display of at least some of the user interface objects which are currently displayed in a user interface view. This provides the visual impression of lateral movement of those user interface objects to an observer.

Returning now to the application illustrated in FIG. 3(b), the GUI screen (also referred to herein as a “UI view”, which terms refer to a currently displayed set of UI objects) seen on television 320 is a home view. In this particular exemplary embodiment, the home view displays a plurality of applications 322, e.g., “Photos”, “Music”, “Recorded”, “Guide”, “Live TV”, “On Demand”, and “Settings”, which are selectable by the user by way of interaction with the user interface via the 3D pointing device 300. Such user interactions can include, for example, pointing, scrolling, clicking or various combinations thereof. For more details regarding exemplary pointing, scrolling and clicking interactions which can be used in conjunction with exemplary embodiments of the present invention, the interested reader is directed to U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/417,764, entitled “METHODS AND SYSTEMS FOR SCROLLING AND POINTING IN USER INTERFACES”, to Frank J. Wroblewski, filed on May 4, 2006, the disclosure of which is incorporated here by reference.

Visual DVR

As mentioned above, the provision of DVR capability to user interfaces associated with televisions (or other devices) is a desirable feature. These exemplary embodiments harness the power of pointing on TV in conjunction with other user interface visualizations to provide a powerful DVR tool for users as will now be described with respect to FIGS. 3(c)-5(d). Starting with FIG. 3(c), another version of the “home” UI view of FIG. 3(b) is shown. Therein, the circle of initial selection elements in FIG. 3(c) is expanded to include a selection element for “Internet” and “Games” as compared to the version shown in FIG. 3(b), any of which can be selected by, for example, pointing to the appropriate selection element and pressing a button on the 3D pointing device 300. Of particular interest for this discussion is the “Recordings” selection element 390 illustrated in FIG. 3(c) (shown as “Recorded” in FIG. 3(b)). Actuation of this element provides one navigation path in these exemplary embodiments to the DVR capabilities described below, although it will be appreciated that other paths may be followed through the user interface to reach these UI views.

For example, actuating selection element 390 could result in the display of the UI view shown in FIG. 4(a), e.g., on a television. Therein, a number of user selection items are available for selection by pointing and clicking. Global navigation icons 400, described in the above-incorporated by reference patent application, are available for quick and easy navigation away from the DVR functionality. In this example, a three tab presentation is provided for this exemplary DVR functionality as shown including: a first tab 402 for items to “Watch Now”, a second tab 404 “Schedule” for use in scheduling recordings and a third tab 406 “Priorities” for prioritizing video recording, e.g., to address conflicts which may exist among the scheduled recordings. The portions of this DVR user interface according to these exemplary embodiments which are associated with each of these three tabs, and their corresponding exemplary UI views, are further described below.

Continuing with the first tab 402 shown in FIG. 4(a), this UI view also includes a legend bar 408. In this exemplary embodiment, the legend bar 408 includes an indication of the date, current time, as well as disk meter which graphically represents the amount of storage space used on, for example, the hard drive 280 for recordings. A “Find Programs” function 409 can be provided to provide a search facility if a large number of different types of recordings have been saved and are presented in this UI view. Below the legend bar 408, individual sets of recordings can be accessed via their corresponding image icon. For example, stored episodes of Molto Mario's cooking show can be accessed via selection item 410 and stored episodes of “The Colbert Report” can be accessed via selection item 412 and retrieved for display on the television. Typically, the UI view shown in FIG. 4(a) would contain many additional selection icons depending upon the number of recordings managed by a particular user or group of users. In this exemplary embodiment, the selection items 410 and 412 are depicted as combinations of images and text. However, these selections could be implemented solely as images or solely as text, although it is preferable to include at least some image component to the selection items 410 and 412 to enhance the visual browsing aspects of DVR interfaces according to these exemplary embodiments.

If a user actuates one of the selection items 410 and 412, the user interface will transition to a new UI view. For example, actuation of a selection item can be performed by a user positioning a cursor over selection item 412 and providing an actuation indication to the user interface, e.g., by moving a 3D pointing device 300 such that the cursor overlays the selection item 412 and then depressing one of the buttons on the 3D pointing device 300. In this case, the user interface may display a transition effect, e.g., an anchor image such as the picture associated with “The Colbert Report” could be zoomed into while translating the picture further to the left-hand edge of the interface. As part of the transition effect, the next UI view 420, e.g., that shown in FIG. 4(b) will be displayed on the television.

The UI view 420 includes its own two tabs 420 and 422. the first tab 422 is the default view for this UI view 420 and shows available recordings of the type which were selected via the UI view of FIG. 4(a), in this example “The Colbert Report” recordings. Selecting the “Upcoming” tab 424 in the UI view 420 results in the display of another UI view, an example of which is illustrated as FIG. 4(c). Therein, each episode is illustrated as a corresponding line item, examples of which are numbered 426, 428, 430 and 432. If more episodes are available for recording than can be displayed in the view of FIG. 4(c), these can be reached by scrolling down, e.g., using the scroll bar 434 or the scroll button on the 3D pointing device 300. In this example, some of the upcoming episodes of the “The Colbert Report” have already been selected for recording as indicated by the available options of “View Details” and “Cancel Rec” on actuatable button elements. Other upcoming episodes of the “The Colbert Report,” e.g., episodes 428 and 432, have not yet been selected for recording as indicated by the presence of a “Record” button. If, for example, a record button is pressed, then an overlaid message can be presented indicating that, for example, the episode 428 has been successfully scheduled for recording as depicted in FIG. 4(d).

Other popup overlay screens can be used to support additional DVR recording options. For example, pointing and clicking on the “Modify Series Options” link 440 in FIG. 4(c) can result in a display of the popup 460 illustrated in FIG. 4(e). In this exemplary embodiment, the “Modify Series Recording Options” popup 460 includes three counters. The counters are used to visually illustrate control settings for various series recording options. For example, counter 462 allows a user to set the number of episodes to be retained on the hard drive 280. As shown in the example of FIG. 4(e), one setting is “All”, however by rotating the counter (i.e., by pointing and clicking on the up and down arrows above the counter window to expose different values), various numerical values for this counter will be displayed and selected, e.g., 1 through 10. The second counter 464 provides a similar control mechanism to instruct the DVR interface when to begin recording relative to the scheduled start time of series. Similarly, counter 466 provides a mechanism for setting a number of minutes to continue recording after the scheduled end time of the series episode.

Likewise, if a user actuates the “Modify Record” options, link 450 from the user interface view shown in FIG. 4(d), a popup overlay 470 can be presented as illustrated in FIG. 4(f). In this exemplary embodiment, the “Modifying Recording Options” popup 470 includes two counters 472 and 474. Counter 472 provides a mechanism for a user to set the number of minutes before the scheduled start time of an episode to start recording for a single episode as compared to a series control overall as illustrated in FIG. 4(e). Likewise, counter 474 provides a mechanism to stop recording a certain number of minutes, e.g., 1 to 10 after a particular episode is scheduled to conclude.

Returning to FIG. 4(a) briefly, the second tab view 404 will now be described according to an exemplary embodiment. Upon selecting the second tab entitled “Schedule”, a user will be presented with, for example, the display illustrated in FIG. 5(a). In this DVR UI view, a user is presented with a grid-guide version of scheduled recordings. The view is still highly visual and may contain, for example, images associated with each of the series being recorded. As in the previous tab view 402, when a user actuates the Schedule tab 404, a zooming transition can be provided wherein one or more of the images illustrated in FIG. 4(a) can be translated and zoomed into to provide an anchor and continuity for the user's navigation experience. The legend bar 408 in the UI view of FIG. 5(a) includes, in addition to the date, time and disk meter, two selectable checkboxes 500 and 502. Checkbox 500 allows user to selectively show conflicts between programs which are scheduled for recording, if any conflicts exist. Each program which is scheduled to be recorded can also have a corresponding status legend on its line entry in the schedule view of FIG. 5(a). For example, the statuses provided in the view of FIG. 5(a), include “In Progress” 504 and “Will Record” 506. For those programs which are currently being recorded by the system, a progress bar 508 can be provided so that the user has additional visual feedback regarding the length of time remaining until the program has been successfully recorded. FIG. 5(b) provides an example where the “Show Conflicts” checkbox 500 has been actuated by a user. In this example, the entries associated with programs to be recorded are then annotated with the status legends such as “Will Record” 510 or “Duplicate” 512. This later status legend can be used when a show has been selected or scheduled for recording twice, e.g., by the same or different users of the system. FIG. 5(c) shows another version of the Schedule tab 404 UI view wherein conflicts exist between different shows. In this example, the “Conflict” status legend 514 can be provided on the corresponding to be recorded entry.

The third tab view in FIG. 4(a) is the “Priorities” tab 406. An example of the view which can be displayed when a user points and clicks on this tab is illustrated as FIG. 5(d). Therein, each series to be recorded can be assigned a priority value as illustrated by the numbers 1 through 7 in this example. If a conflict should arise as between scheduled recordings, these priority values can be used to determine which of the conflicting programs will actually be recorded and assigned the “Will Record” status value described above.

Systems and methods for processing data according to exemplary embodiments of the present invention can be performed by one or more processors executing sequences of instructions contained in a memory device. Such instructions may be read into the memory device from other computer-readable mediums such as secondary data storage device(s). Execution of the sequences of instructions contained in the memory device causes the processor to operate, for example, as described above. In alternative embodiments, hard-wire circuitry may be used in place of or in combination with software instructions to implement the present invention.

Numerous variations of the afore-described exemplary embodiments are contemplated. The above-described exemplary embodiments are intended to be illustrative in all respects, rather than restrictive, of the present invention. Thus the present invention is capable of many variations in detailed implementation that can be derived from the description contained herein by a person skilled in the art. All such variations and modifications are considered to be within the scope and spirit of the present invention as defined by the following claims. No element, act, or instruction used in the description of the present application should be construed as critical or essential to the invention unless explicitly described as such. Also, used herein, the article “a” is intended to include one or more items.

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Classifications
U.S. Classification386/234, G9B/27.051, G9B/27.012, 386/E05.001, 348/E05.105, 725/61, 386/291
International ClassificationH04N7/26
Cooperative ClassificationH04N21/4753, H04N21/4755, H04N21/4147, H04N21/4825, H04N2005/4412, H04N21/47214, H04N5/44543, H04N5/4403, G11B27/34, H04N5/76, G11B27/034, H04N21/42206, H04N21/478, H04N21/47217, H04N21/4583, H04N21/4334, H04N21/4312, H04N21/482, H04N21/4852
European ClassificationH04N21/482, H04N21/472R, H04N5/445M, H04N5/76, G11B27/34, G11B27/034
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Oct 30, 2007ASAssignment
Owner name: HILLCREST LABORATORIES, INC., MARYLAND
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:CONROY, KEVIN M.;MOSHIRI, NEGAR;WITENSTEIN-WEAVER, JASON;REEL/FRAME:020034/0367;SIGNING DATES FROM 20071008 TO 20071022